Winners Never Quit Rocking

On Saturday, June 16, I hosted the San Diego County Fair's Musicpalooza competition, where five area acts went head to head in a battle of the bands. The event took place on the Ford Dealers Paddock Stage to a full house, though maybe it was the beer fest going on at the same time that packed the place.

No matter: The bands were ready to rock and really only had to impress the judges panel, which consisted of Bart Mendoza (San Diego Reader), Rosey Bystrak (SD Dialed In, SoundDiego) and Mookie (DJ). The five bands were Pleasure Fix, So Long Davey, Hestyn, Pullman Standard and Trouble in the Wind. They had only five minutes to set up and tear down, with 25 minutes of performance time. If they went over, they were cut off.

All the bands were winners, since all of the five finalists received a Taylor SolidBody electric guitar, donated by Taylor Guitars. Musicpalooza was also sponsored by Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, House of Blues, the Casbah, and FM94/9. The key thing to note is that the fair also had a total of $8,500 in cash prizes to be distributed amongst the Top 3 finalists, which isn't chump change for a local band.

After several hours of musical performances and witty commentary from yours truly, the winners were crowned. The top prize went to the Carlsbad-based Americana band/rock & rollers Trouble in the Wind, who took home $5,000. Pop rockers Pullman Standard -- also from San Diego -- took second place and $2,500 in cash. Third place went to Irvine-based band Hestyn and their heavy rock sounds. Sure, Pleasure Fix and So Long Davey didn't win any cash, but they still got those sweet Taylor SolidBody electric guitars. So again, everybody wins!

The Musicpalooza event is always a highlight of my summer, and I've hosted six of the past seven years. I want to thank the wonderful staff at the San Diego County Fair for letting me be a part of this great event. The best part is I'm now on the list to drive in the demolition derby every year! Now it's time for some bacon dipped in chocolate or that turkey leg wrapped in bacon. Either way, more bacon!

Tim Pyles hosts The Local 94/9, FTP show and the Coup d'Eat on FM94/9 on Sundays from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. He also books local acts at the Casbah and hosts the weekly Anti-Monday League. Check out his website and follow him on Twitter @thelocalpyle. You can reach him directly here

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